Does Your Small Business Offer Health Insurance Benefits?

- Entrepreneurial Skills

by Wendy Dessler

It’s no secret that healthcare is a hot-topic issue in the United States. With new laws and regulations, it’s not always easy to keep up. As the Affordable Care Act (ACA) continues to be scaled back under this governmental administration, there are a lot of new questions popping up for small businesses.

In the world of small business, there’s an ongoing debate about whether you should offer health insurance benefits for your employees. On the one hand, you care about your employees and you want them to lead healthy lives. On the other hand, healthcare is expensive and small businesses have to pay more than large enterprises for similar employee coverage.

Whether your business offers health benefits is a big question. If you do offer health insurance benefits, are you getting the best value? If you’re not offering benefits, is that something you should consider in the future? We’ll answer these questions and more in this guide.

Should You Offer Health Benefits?

First, you need to decide if your business is legally required to provide health insurance for your employees. There’s something known as the employer mandate which means if you have 50+ full-time (or full-time equivalent) employees, you need to offer insurance coverage. If this applies to you, you’ll need to provide minimum essential coverage (MEC) to your employees who qualify.

Small businesses who don’t have over 50 full-time equivalent employees aren’t bound to offer coverage under this mandate, but there are still a lot of reasons to consider offering health insurance.

The cost of health insurance is usually the biggest deterrent for small businesses, especially when money is already tight. There are more options than you think though.

  • The first option is to offer group health insurance. Believe it or not, group health insurance options are available for small businesses no matter how many people are employed at your organization.
  • Another option is to search through your small business marketplace. This will give you access to local and state programs that might be available to you and your employees.

Making the Right Decision

It’s important to take care of your employees. Turnover rates for small businesses are higher than ever, and you want to keep your best workers happy. This comes from taking care of them in the ways that matter, like through health insurance coverage.

Offering health insurance doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. In fact, it’s becoming easier every day. New options and programs are arising to make this process much less confusing to navigate. Are you ready to offer your employees the benefits they’ve been waiting for?

Photo Credit: Marvy Meyer

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